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- The One From the Other - By Philip Kerr - Books - Review - The New York Times.
Jerry Szatan. Marshall Brown. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published. Kinsey's series? Must-Read: Spider-Geddon. Last Reading Guides. September 23, September 19, It's work that fills Bernie with disgust - but it also fills his sorely depleted wallet. Then a woman seeks him out. Her husband has disappeared. She's not looking to get him back - he's a wanted man who ran one of the most vicious concentration camps in Poland. She just wants confirmation that he's dead.
Since the late eighties, Philip Kerr had been redefining crime fiction with his justly-lauded Bernie Gunther sequence. Just before he died Philip Kerr finished a fourteenth Bernie Gunther novel Metropolis, which will be published next year. Kerr also wrote a number of stand alone thrillers and children's books during a prolific career. Picked this up free with the current Books Quarterly magazine and to be honest I wasn't expecting much. However I was very much surprised by this book.
The book kicks off with a visit to Palestine by Bernie I was given this book and put it at the bottom of a pile that needed reading. Oh how I wish I had started immediately. The book takes an unusal angle and from a difficult time in European history. A time that can The very talented Mr Kerr presents his character Bernie Gunther in another captivating experience set in and around Germany before and after WW2.
Neither pure mysteries or thrillers they are heavily atmospheric Please sign in to write a review.
Check availability At your local shop. View other formats and editions. Synopsis Author. Either way I felt sorry for him. There was another reason I felt sorry for the man. He looked feverish and ill.
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Hardly equal to the task of digging a hole in my garden. I said as much to the American as he fetched some tools from the cavernous trunk of the Buick. Some of them have murdered thousands of people. These guys put themselves outside the protection of Geneva. The day was a hot one. Too hot to be digging anywhere but in your pockets. Wolf leaned on a tree for a moment as he tried to get his bearings, and let out a sigh.
I fetched the water, and returned to find Wolf, pickax in hand. He took a swing at the lawn and almost fell over. I caught him by the elbow and helped him to sit down. The American was lighting a cigarette, apparently unconcerned. He can hardly stand. Probably shot them in the head where they fell. Not a bad idea at that. Save me the trouble of taking him back to the prison hospital.
The One from the Other (Bernie Gunther Series #4)
These shoes are from Florsheim. It sounded and felt like a coffin. The American was quickly over to the side of the hole, his eyes searching the earth. I kept on digging and finally levered out a box that was the size of a small suitcase and placed it on the grass at his feet. It was heavy. When I looked up, I saw that he was holding a thirty-eight in his hand.
A snub-nosed police special. Especially a man who was noble enough to turn down a hundred marks. I put my hand in my pocket and, seeing him stiffen a little, laughed.
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Either that, or you tell a good story. About five minutes later I looked out my bathroom window and saw Wolf carrying the box slowly to the Buick. Still holding his gun, and glancing nervously up at the windows of the hotel as if I might have a rifle, the American opened the trunk and Wolf dropped the box inside. Then the two of them got into the car and drove quickly away. I went downstairs, fetched a beer from the bar, and then locked the front door. The American had been right about one thing. I was a lousy hotel-keeper. And it was high time I recognized that in some practical way.
From there I walked through the bomb-damaged city center to the corner of Ludwigstrasse, where, in front of the charred ruins of the Leuchtenberg Palais and the Odeon, once the best concert halls in Munich, I took a tram north, in the direction of Schwabing.
Here, nearly all of the buildings reminded me of myself, with only the housefronts standing, so that while the general appearance of the street seemed hardly impaired, everything was in reality badly damaged and burned out. It was high time I made some repairs. Working as the Adlon house detective in the early thirties, I had learned a little about running a grand hotel, but this had been very poor preparation for running a small one.
The Ami was right.
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I had to go back to what I knew best. I was going to tell Kirsten that I intended to put the hotel up for sale, and that I planned to become a private detective again. Of course, telling her was one thing; expecting her to register any sign of comprehension was quite another. And whereas I still had a facade, Kirsten seemed like a complete ruin of her former self. On the north edge of Schwabing was the main state hospital. It was used as the American military hospital, which meant that Germans had to go somewhere else.
This was just around the corner from the main hospital, in Kraepelinstrasse. There were bars on the windows of the room and the three other women she shared it with were all severely disturbed. The room stank of urine and, from time to time, one of the other women would scream out loud, laugh hysterically, or throw something unspeakable in my direction. Also, the beds were verminous. Kirsten herself was hardly recognizable as the woman I had married. In the ten months since leaving Berlin she had aged ten years.
Her hair was long and gray and unwashed. Her eyes were like two spent lightbulbs. She sat on the edge of her iron bedstead and stared at the green linoleum floor as if it had been the most fascinating thing she had ever seen.
She looked like some poor stuffed animal in the anthropological collection at the museum on RichardWagner-Strasse. After her father had died, Kirsten had fallen into a state of general depression and started drinking a lot and talking to herself. At first I had assumed she thought I was listening, but it was soon painfully clear to me that this was not the case. So I was actually pleased when she stopped talking to herself. The only trouble was that she stopped talking completely, and when it became apparent that she had withdrawn into herself, I summoned the doctor, who recommended immediate hospitalization.
Bublitz, the psychiatrist treating Kirsten, had told me, about a week after her admission. After what Germany has been through, who can be surprised? Almost a fifth of our inpatients are suffering from some kind of catatonia. Much to my annoyance, it was a mistake that showed no sign of being rectified. But that was false. Although he remains in psychiatric care. Mostly I sat beside Kirsten and brushed her hair and sometimes lit her a cigarette that I fixed in the corner of her mouth, where it stayed until I took it out, unsmoked.